We had the good fortune of connecting with Breana Kennedy and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Breana, what is the most important factor behind your success?
This is a pretty big question to tackle but instantly my mind went to how lucky I am to have my business partner. She is one of the most resilient people I have ever met, and has an engine that just doesn’t quit! I think to find success it is incredibly important to have balance in life whether it be work/life balance, realism/passion or risk/certainty. The beauty of having a partner is having someone to constantly bounce ideas off of and somehow balance your current life mindset. I find when I am feeling overwhelmed with any challenges we are facing, Tali, my business partner (and partner in all things really), will somehow find a beautiful way to make everything seem possible. In turn I find that where one of us is lacking, the other more than makes up for it. It is a perfect balance. I know there is a lot of controversy in regards to partnerships, and I sadly know many that did not work out, actually I know more that did not work than actually succeeded but when you are able to create a perfect harmony in your business, that is where the magic happens. You will never find success if you only surround yourself with those that always agree with you. It is important to surround yourself with people that challenge you, that help you get out of your comfort zone, and look to “more”. My husband who I feel safe saying has one of the most brilliant minds I have ever known (I know I am partial but hear me out) constantly tells me people who refuse to listen to feedback will eventually be surrounded by people who have nothing significant to say. Many very successful people have said variations of this adage over the years and I wholeheartedly believe this. I am not saying I think it is a necessity to have a partner to find success, obviously many extremely successful people have proven that over the years but I do feel that even those people if you speak to them will tell you they made sure to seek feedback- continue to learn every day. I love picking people’s brains on how they handled situations, I LOVE learning from others mistakes in hope of avoiding them myself. I guess what I am trying to say is I think success really boils down to who you surround yourself with and having the capacity to actually listen to advice. It may not always work for you but that doesn’t mean there isn’t a nugget of insight that makes all the difference for your business.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
TAB Showroom does distribution for women’s contemporary clothing. We are in charge of placing our brands, all seven of them, in the best possible retail outlets for what they offer. We work with everyone from amazing online partners like Vicicollection.com and lulus.com to brick and mortar boutiques throughout the entire West Coast of the US. When we opened the showroom we stumbled into a fantastic niche market that I feel is more relevant now than ever after the pandemic. Women are seeking timeless and quality pieces but are not wanting to pay top dollar anymore, because they don’t have to. There are some incredible brands out there offering genuinely beautiful items all retailing under $100. Once we realized how well this offering was working there was no going back. I truly believe in the idea of selling items most everyone can afford and be proud while wearing. We do not just partner with any brand out there, we are very thoughtful about who we work with and that the product we offer aligns with this concept. Most brands in our showroom retail under $100 and the few that don’t are incredibly priced for what they offer. An example of this is the leather outerwear line we represent, Mauritius. Most people imagine gorgeous leather goods retailing no lower than $500 but a majority of Mauritius jackets retail under $3oo. We are all about creating value, we want our buyers to know when they are stepping into our showroom they do not need to be intimidated by what we offer but rather excited by the value our brands provide. I think this is largely what separates us from our counterparts- we have picked a lane and are very proud to stick to it. Coming out of a year filled with so many unknowns all I can feel is proud. Proud of all we have accomplished and how much growth is ahead of us- it really is so exciting. I find that is the best part of starting something of your own, even the scary or stressful moments that present themselves still have an undertone of excitement if you allow them to. You can be presented with a challenge and be creative with how you can use it to work for you instead of against you- its like living a real life riddle! Facing new experiences is what life is all about and you never run out of those when you own a business- so more opportunity to learn and grow. Anyone who says starting something of your own is easy honestly never did it. You know when its right because the stars often align themselves but many don’t take the chance and bet on themselves. If you do jump, and take that chance, then it is up to you to not give up along the way and find grit through all of life’s crazy, I have found time after time it is worth it.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Los Angeles is definitely not lacking in places to go and people to see. I am in a bit of a different time in my life having two young kids, owning a business and balancing all of the happenings of my life so I truly enjoy most going somewhere fun or even unique but where I can actually hear and talk to those I am with- the days of drunk grinding in a club where you pretend you can hear what those next to you are saying (rather than asking “what?” for the tenth time) are way behind me so if that is what you are looking for read no further. Let’s start with the fact that I am a wino through and through. I absolutely love going to Rosenthal Wines in Malibu. You can’t beat the location and the wine is so good my husband and I became members. It’s my favorite wine tasting location in LA. A very close second runner up is Ester’s in Santa Monica and they have beautiful cheese plates to pair back with their wine so I love their happy hour. My new favorite rooftop in LA is at Proper Hotel. The design is incredibly chic and the crowd is my vibe. If you are looking for a really fun and different dining experience Barton G is the most unique place I have ever been to in LA. The food is actually good which is not always the case for dining establishments with a more kitchy concept. One of the more random and insanely fun nights was going to Lost Spirits. They are temporary closed but I hope they re-open because that is the perfect place to take someone visiting LA- lets just say it is a very interactive Whiskey tasting tour. If you are a diehard pasta lover bar none Felix in Venice is a must, my mouth is watering just thinking of that bread. Honestly though, if you are looking for me on a date night, which I plan to have many in my future after all of these lock downs, my heart belongs to Don Antonios. They have the most insane margaritas, the food is by far the best Mexican I have had anywhere in LA and you can not beat the people and atmosphere. The indoor dining has a cave and the back patio has endless bougainvilleas- plus everyone knows us there and that goes far in my book! Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I am so lucky to say I am surrounded by many mentors. My mom started a business when she was in her 50’s which was an incredible thing to watch and inspire me. My parents have always been my biggest support structure and seeing my mom actually build something of her own gave me the courage to do it as well. My husband also has a beautiful way of pushing me to do more than I think I ever could. He believes in me more than I believe in myself – don’t tell him! Also, I have had some incredible female powerhouse mentors in my industry. The woman I worked for for 14 years before I launched TAB Showroom showed me all the ropes. She was so trusting in me and really gave me incomparable opportunities. The stores I was working with and things I was doing all before I even graduated from college was pretty amazing when I think back. Most people would not trust a 20 year old with their business the way she did and I will be forever grateful for that. Lastly, Tali, my business partner of course. All roads lead back to Tali- She is the T in TAB after all. I really am so blessed to have so many people to look to when I need advice and encouragement.
Linkedin: Breana Kennedy
Dennis Hernandez, dsophotography.com